Monastery is used generically to refer to any of a number of types of religious community.

In most religions the life inside monasteries is governed by community rules that stipulates the sex of the inhabitants and requires them to remain celibate and own little or no personal property.

The degree to which life inside a particular monastery is socially separate from the surrounding populace can also vary widely.

Some religious traditions mandate isolation for purposes of contemplation removed from the everyday world.

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